Research Experiences for Teachers on Applied Data Science for Cybersecurity
Project Overview: This Research Experiences for Teachers (RET) project is focused on data science and its applications in cybersecurity. Each summer, ten high school science and mathematics teachers will participate in summer research activities with faculty at Texas Tech University. The teachers will be recruited from the area served by the Texas Educational Service Center Region 17, which includes the city of Lubbock and the surrounding rural areas. Teachers will apply fundamental data science techniques and learn basic cyber security principles while investigating real world problems.
Summer Activities: During the first 2 weeks of the summer, teachers will undergo orientation and be introduced to R programming and basic data science concepts as applied to cyber security problems. This material will be covered through hands-on "follow me" exercises. At the end of Week # 2, teachers will be divided into teams, and each team assigned a research project. These research projects will be done for the next three weeks. During this period, CS faculty will give regular feedback about the projects and also continue to introduce the teachers to various data science and cyber security technologies (e.g., cryptography, network attacks, web threats, Microsoft data science tools, etc.). In Week #5, teachers will make plans for the incorporation of their experiences into the classroom, and will develop curriculum modules during Week #6.
Follow-up Activities: After the summer session, teachers will be expected to translate their research experiences into classroom activities. The teachers will be free to do this implementation in one of the following ways: (1) after school activities, (2) a partial implementation in which the teachers will incorporate a few relevant items from the program into their classes, and (3) a full implementation of data science/cyber security curriculum. During the Fall and Spring terms immediately following the summer program, CS and (or) EDUC faculty will visit the schools and attend at least one of the classroom sessions in which the curriculum will be implemented. These visits will only be for our reporting purposes.
Project Stipends: Teachers will be paid a stipend of $1000 per week in the summer session and a total of $2000 during the Spring and Fall classroom implementations. $2000 will be used to buy supplies that will support the classroom implementation. Teachers who don't have a laptop capable of handling the data analytics work to be done on the project will use part of this money to buy one.
To ensure that these payments are made in a timely fashion, the selected teachers will be expected to fill out employment and tax paperwork in advance of the summer program. This way, all paperwork will be approved through the TTU system before the start of the RET program.